ONE heavyweight champion of the world, Anatoly Malykhin, has been waiting for an opponent since he captured the belt against Kirill Grishenko at ONE: Bad Blood in February.
The Russian juggernaut has had several verbal rivalries against some of ONE Championship’s biggest names, including heavyweight king Arjan Bhullar and dual titleholder Reinier de Ridder.
While we may not know what the future holds for Anatoly Malykhin right now, it looks like ‘Sladkiy’ is preparing for the upcoming fight based on a post on Instagram. In the post, fans were treated to a short clip of Malykhin doing some exercises at the gym with the caption:
“One Year Heavyweight 🌎 Fight News 🔜 @anmalykhin 🏆🏆”
Speculation began immediately as to who Malykhin might enter the Circle. The feature is the long-awaited title unification bout with heavyweight champion Arjan Bhullar. The two have been trading verbal blows with each other on Instagram for the past eight months and have almost squared off, but the promotion is still welcoming the two heavyweight champions.
Do you believe Anatoly Malykhin should wait for a unification bout against Bhullar, or would you rather see ‘Sladkiy’ face another contender with a temporary title on the line?
According to Fabricio Andrade, Arjan Bhullar does not want to fight Anatoly Malykhin
After months of speculation and little movement, many people believe that the ONE heavyweight unification bout between Arjan Bhullar and Anatoly Malykhin will happen. This includes former bantamweight champion Fabricio Andrade, who says ‘Singh’ doesn’t want to fight in the Russian Chamber:
“So it’s very frustrating, but he’s still training, he’s still ready,” Andrade said in an interview with the South China Morning Post. “I’m not sure what’s going to happen to him now, but I know he’s ready to fight anyone, anytime. I don’t think Bhullar wants to fight, that’s for sure. He doesn’t want to fight, I think the division should just move on,” Andrade said.
The heavyweight title was implemented in February when Arjan Bhullar worked with the promotion to negotiate the terms of his contract. When it was over, many thought that the fight would be quickly consolidated, but that was not the case. Maybe Malykhin’s latest tease is the serious copy we’ve all been waiting for. Probably not. Only time will tell.
Watch Malykhin’s heroics below: